I'm keyburrito, and I am one of the many to have a close encounter with the Tails Doll, as I am one of the few to survive.
My first experience with Sonic R was several years ago. Ironically, I received the PC version from a school catalogue, along with Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic CD, and an assortment of puzzle games. Fortunately, I had the attention span of a common household fly, so I'd barely unlocked Metal Sonic when the game started to get repetitive. I quickly forgot about it, and moved on to other things.
I completely forgot about Sonic R, but something came up a few months ago. There was a flash movie on Youtube, named 'The Tails Doll Curse.' I casually clicked the title, but the movie wasn't all that great. I didn't know what this 'Tails Doll' was, though. I checked the comments, and there were several people talking about this curse being real, so I decided to investigate. I googled 'Tails Doll', and the first page was 'Tails From The Crypt,' which I entered. I was treated to a long list of stories, each one telling a sinister encounter with you-know-who. At first I laughed. "Oh, come ON! You can actually BELIEVE this junk?!" I took it as a big joke. I was writing 'Can you feel the sunshine?' on pieces of paper and giving them out to people at school, and frequently comment on Youtube movies about the Tails Doll. Well, I finally decided to try the curse out at one point, but, lo and behold, Sonic R won't work on my computer! Drat! Instead, I shelled out $18 for a copy of Sonic Gems Collection, and used it instead. As soon as I powered it up, I went for Sonic R.
I first unlocked Metal Sonic at Resort Island. He put up a fight, but he wasn't TOO hard. The Egg Robo was a cinch, but Metal Knuckles almost won, if it weren't for the fact that it missed a shortcut. That left Tails Doll. When he appeared on-screen, I inhaled sharply. Something about him was very unsettling. Suddenly, things were a lot more serious. I averted my eyes, remembering that staring too long causes the Tails Doll to feast upon your eyeballs. The race started, and I quickly took the lead. It was as if it WANTED me to win; at one point, it even started to run into the wall over and over again, allowing me to cross-lap it. The race was over before it started.
I saved and powered down the Gamecube, too spooked to go further. That night was VERY uncomfortable. Every time I saw a red light on a VCR, I imagined the Tails Doll's red crystal, warning me of things to come. Whenever I opened I door, I expected to see the Tails Doll right behind it, holding a knife to my throat. Whenever the phone rang, I checked the caller ID, afraid of that dreaded call from inside the house. It was everywhere at once, yet nowhere to be found.
The next day, I unlocked Super Sonic and Dr. Robotnik, completing the game 100%. All that was left was to play tag mode with Tails Doll, but I wanted to make sure I was protected. I thought of known methods, but I had nothing to use: not Sonic plushie, no Tails Skypatrol cartridge, nothing. Besides, the Tails Doll said it himself...the same trick won't work twice. There was something, though...numbers! Most survivors had someone to watch their back! I quickly dialed my friends number (let's call him 'Dave'), and he came over to my house.
We were all set. The game was in the system, and we had protection, although it was scant. In fact, all we had were a samurai blade (I bought it last year at the Renaissance festival), the SatAM DVD box set, and the Super Mario Bros. Super Show DVD box set. Anyways, I picked up the controller to play, and my friend powered on the system. I loaded the save data, and went to tag mode, on Radical City.
The race started, and everyone bolted. I managed to catch Egg Robo within the first five seconds, and Metal Sonic within the first thirty. Metal Knuckles made lap around twice, but I got him on the third. That left Super Sonic. I began to cut corners. It took a full two minutes, but he bumped into a wall, and I tagged him quick. Tails Doll did it's funky little victory dance, and the after-race menu popped up.
"Heh, I knew it was a joke," I said confidently.
That was when the lights went out.
I grabbed the SMBSS box, and my friend grabbed the SatAM box. The replay started on it's own, and instead of 'Living in the City,' 'Can You Feel The Sunshine?' was on. The camera was set about 20 yards away from the starting line, looking straight at the Tails Doll. It came closer, closer...until it was right next to the camera. I gasped. The Tail Doll leapt right out of the TV, and was heading straight for me! My friend quickly batted it away with the sword, and ran out of the room. I didn't hesitate to follow.
We ran and ran, but the Tails Doll kept getting closer, until finally, we made a wrong turn and went into the pantry. "There's no escape now, mortals," a voice said as the Tails Doll approached. "Your souls are MINE!"
"Throw the DVDs!", Dave yelled. He chucked his at the monster, and I followed suit. Both connected. The Tails Doll fizzled a bit, then it blinked out of existence. I sighed. We made it alive.
Occasionally, when I watch my SMBSS DVDs, I see a red glow in the background. I may have driven the Tails Doll off once, but he'll be back, and next time, he'll be prepared.